Published on: December 19, 2017
by Harvard Health Publishing:
Among people who have atrial fibrillation (afib), those who take anti-clotting medications may be less likely to develop dementia later in life than those who don’t take the drugs, a new study finds.
Afib, a disorder marked by a rapid, irregular heartbeat, raises the risk of stroke as well as dementia. Anti-clotting drugs are known to lower the risk of stroke, but the drugs’ effects on dementia weren’t clear. So Swedish researchers examined hospital and pharmacy registry data from nearly half a million people who were diagnosed with afib between 2006 and 2014.
They found that people with afib who took either warfarin (Coumadin) or one of the novel oral anticoagulants (NOACs) were 29% less likely to develop dementia during the nearly nine years of follow-up. NOACs include apixaban (Eliquis), dabigatran (Pradaxa), edoxaban (Savaysa), and rivaroxaban (Xarelto).
The findings suggest that starting anti-clotting drugs soon after an afib diagnosis could help people preserve their thinking abilities, according to the authors. The study was published in the October 2017 European Heart Journal.
Walking is potent mood medicine that enhances your thinking, sharpens your memory, and safeguards brain health. It’s one of the most simple and easiest forms of exercise – but the benefits are huge.
The material presented through the Think Tank feature on this website is in no way intended to replace professional medical care or attention by a qualified practitioner. WBHI strongly advises all questioners and viewers using this feature with health problems to consult a qualified physician, especially before starting any treatment. The materials provided on this website cannot and should not be used as a basis for diagnosis or choice of treatment. The materials are not exhaustive and cannot always respect all the most recent research in all areas of medicine.